Three Fall Highlander Teams Claim New England Titles

The fall of 2022 has been an exciting one for the Pingree Highlander athletics program, culminating in three teams winning their New England titles: girls cross country, girls soccer, and field hockey. 

Girls Cross Country Defends NEPSTA D3 Title

Congratulations are in order for the girls varsity cross country team, who successfully defended their Division III NEPSTA title for the second year running! The team placed second in the Eastern Independent League for the fall 2022 season and had a strong showing at the regional meet on November 12 at Canterbury School in New London, Connecticut. Helen Coughlin ’24, Emily Haas ’25, and Kasey Schena ’24 finished within eight seconds of one another in a tight grouping, leading the team to victory. 

"I am extremely proud of the girls for their grit and determination for winning their second consecutive NEPSTA championship," noted coach Jim MacLaughlin. "Not all of our runners were at their best for the meet, but we had a strategy and they did all they could to run their best race possible and support each other along the course. When the title was announced it was terrific to see not only how happy they were, but also that they truly appreciated each other and how much it took to earn the championship."

Girls Soccer Clinches NEPSAC Class B Championship

With a 3-0 win over Lawrence Academy on Sunday, November 20, the girls varsity soccer team clinched the NEPSAC Class B championship, their first New England title since 2016 and fourth overall. Congratulations to Kayla Smyrnios ’26, Maddie Landers ’23, and Hanna Jenkins ’25 for their goals and an impressive shutout by keeper Maggie Warner ’23.

“They’re a team,” said coach Doc Simpson. “It’s probably one of the best teams that we’ve had. We’ve had a lot of great individual players but this was a complete team effort.”

Field Hockey Brings Back the NEPSAC Class C Title

For the second time in four years, the field hockey team took home the NEPSAC Class C title with a 3-1 win over New Hampton. Congratulations to scorers Nina Husak ’23, Olivia Donahue ’23, and Grace Mullaney ’23. 

Coach Jen Richardson shared, "The girls were so determined; they set out this year to reclaim the NEPSAC and never looked back.

"We put together all the necessary pieces we needed and with the right attitudes, hard work, adaptions, communication, and good leadership it became a reality. I believe they truly looked forward to the time on the field together and with some laughter, team bonding and support of one another, they developed trust and were able to take risks on the field to get better because they knew their teammates had their back. We had a solid group of very special seniors that all had a huge commitment to making their farewell tour the best it could be. This leadership was evident in the field, in the classroom, as well as in the locker room. When you have a special group like that, it’s contagious and everyone steps up to the level needed to compete at a high level.

"I say it almost every year that I hope they can truly appreciate and remember all that went into what it takes to be champions and have the fondest memories of the times on the field: the laughs, the inside jokes, and all the moments in between that led them to be champions. When they look back at their time at Pingree, in these memories they will always have huge smiles and a proud feeling that will last as long as the memories do."